Home Events Hennessy X.O Food Tasting With Chef Michael Han in Penang

Hennessy X.O Food Tasting With Chef Michael Han in Penang

by Taufulou

I guess some of you have seen my previous blog on Hennessy X.O appreciation grows in Penang happening last year happen on May 2011 at Suffolk House Penang (click here for previous write up). Early this month, we were the lucky few bloggers to be selected to follow the young Chef Michael Han to Penang for food trail.

Chef Micheal (1)

We were all just excited about the food trail as on the plane, some of them were saying, I want Chendol, Laksa, and . . . . those food names just got blurt out by many of them.

Chef Micheal (2)

We purposely did not take any breakfast as we prepare to follow suit food hunting with the chef.

Chef Micheal (3)

and I could not even remember when was the last time, that I did follow a tour or onboard a bus with a tour guide. It makes me felt that I am like a tourist, with the guide explaning and telling us the history of Penang. Learn quite a lot of new stuff on the way. As we look on our itinerary, I am happy all those food area are my favorite locations.

Chef Micheal (4)

First stop of food trail at 10am, we stop by at Penang road, at Joo Hooi Cafe for Asam Laksa.

Chef Micheal (5)

this laksa stall was chosen as it is around 40 years old, starting from parents then now the son is taking over. Penang Laksa well known to many tourist that its a food that must not miss if you set into Penang, that is also voted as one of the best street food  listed at number 7 on World’s 50 most delicious foods complied by CNN Go in 2011.

Chef Micheal (7)

All of us getting ready as our arrival create a huge curiosity to many customers inside the coffee shop. Most of them stare and commented, and then stare again as we came in a huge group with cameras, including Penang reporters and cameraman.

Chef Micheal (6)

Asam Laksa is know along with its sourish fish base soup that Asam is the malay word for tamarind that use to give the stock its sour flavor.

Chef Micheal (8)

One of the main ingredient that is used  is made with ikan kembung know as mackeral fish. Penang Laksa is different in flavour as it  include lemongrass, galangal and chilli. For garnishing on top, serve along with mint, pineapples slices, thinly sliced onion, shirmp paste, and torch ginger flower.

Chef Micheal (10)

Then it is serve along smooth texture of rice vermicelli

Chef Micheal (9)

Chef Michael is definately not a stranger in this local scene street food as he grown up with a nanny that is from Penang. Chef enjoying his bowl of laksa. . .

Chef Micheal (11)

So does me. 🙂

Chef Micheal (12)

Then after the meal, he went over to learn Penang Style laksa preparation by the stall owner, as checking out the broth and he is impress on the process as this laksa stall prepare by going through 2 types of soup.

Chef Micheal (13)

Early in the morning, we were already yam seng all the way with Hennessy X.O and the uncle is so joyful

Chef Micheal (14)

Uncle were so happy as get to know that a famous young chef dropping by his stall. Very nice and talkertive too.

Chef Micheal (15)

As before we head out, we were adventurous trying to think what the chef have in mind, then we pair X.O into our laksa. Turn out to be, not bad. If it were cook into it, I think would taste more kick eh!

Chef Micheal (16)

Next stop, New World Park, Lee Brothers famous Ice Kacang.

Chef Micheal (17)

Along with Pai Tee also known as Top Hat.

Chef Micheal (18)

Anna with her weird expressions!

Chef Micheal (19)

chef is enjoying both Ice Kacang and Pai tee

Chef Micheal (20)

Pai Tee, outer layer of pai tee is cripsy, then filled with chinese turnip and topped with fried shallots, diced carrots, fried egg and peanuts. For me I always eat it in one big mouth. 😀

Chef Micheal (21)

Ice Kacang

Chef Micheal (22)

3rd stop is one of my all time favourite Nasi Kandar, never fail to come here whenever I am back Penang but this would be the first time I dine here in the afternoon. This place need not any further introduction as now it is pretty well know to many locals and even tourist.

Many people would have hard time finding this place as it is actually hidden one of a small alley that tuck in between these 2 pre-war house.

Chef Micheal (23)

Usually in the afternoon the crowd here is crazy and gets even worst if its a long weekend with tourist pouring in. . .as I only often come here for supper. . 😀

Chef Micheal (24)

I just realise that many family crowd did order their Curry fish head and the fish head is seriously huge!

Chef Micheal (31)

This round this is what we have for lunch . .

Chef Micheal (25)

Chef Micheal (26)

Beef Curry

Chef Micheal (27)

Bean Sprout

Chef Micheal (28)

Fish

Chef Micheal (29)

Fried chicken is a must have!

Chef Micheal (30)

And I prefer my version of nasi kandar is with kuah banjir (lots of curry gravy)

Chef Micheal (32)

Wilson enjoying his meal as turn our to be one of his favourite spot too.

Chef Micheal (33)

This is what happen if you come after 12pm during long weekend. You can see its line grow and make a long L shape after that. One of the reason people love this stall because of its spicy curry gravy and the spices that they cook along.

Chef Micheal (34)

4th stop is at Kafe Khoon Hiang at Dato Keramat for Ah Leng Char Koey Teow. Apparently, there are places which is available that, in the afternoon in this coffee shop, is the son that fried it and during night, is his dad that are frying at Jalan Zoo, Ayer Itam area. I have heard so much about Ah Leng CKT and never once drop by and here am I to get the opportunity to try one of the stall.

Chef Micheal (35)

Chef Micheal (36)

Look at the huge prawn that were added in

Chef Micheal (37)

One thing I notice on the frying style is that he added in ‘ti chio’ (sweet Sauce) and this is the first time I come across Char Koey Teow added that in.

Chef Micheal (38)

Then chef were thought to fry on Ah Leng Char Koey Teow version.

Chef Micheal (39)

Guess who is next tyring to cook. Anna. Wonder who will eat her cooking version.

Chef Micheal (42)

Tadaaa, here is the Char Koey Teow with the texture and colour of it, definately looks good!

Chef Micheal (40)

As the char Koey teow were fried up and serve, most of them cant wait to get a bite of it as it smells fragrant and top with juicy prawns.

Chef Micheal (41)

Before that, cheers again as we were drinking as early as 10am from the first stop, and of course we have to skip at Nasi Kandar area.

Chef Micheal (43)

Ah Leng Char Koey Teow cook along with prawn mantis too.  Best of all, it did not stop there as we went adventurous again we we infuse the CKT along with Hennessy X.O and it turns out to be superbly good. More fragrant and stronger in taste. After our own mixture, the CKT were gone in seconds. As another plate was serve, we did the same thing again and other food bloggers just came and attack.

Chef Micheal (44)

Chef enjoying this CKT a whole plate by himself.

Chef Micheal (45)

Final stop would be at Kedai Kopi Seng Thor that is famous for its fried oyster. This is one of the shop that I grew up along to dine there most of the time when I was a kid as this fried oyster is stall is my grandmother’s favourite stall. We called it ‘O-chein’. She would eat at least 3-4 times aweek or would follow my grandpa to sit in the coffee shop while he is reading his newspaper.

Chef Micheal (46)

Seng Thor Fried Oyster Ommelete is one of the stalls that you must try if you love this dish. Just that you must have the patience to wait, as it can easily take up your waiting time from 30 mins to an hour.

Chef Micheal (47)

First he will put his own mixture of ingredient with a thin layer at the bottom to cook along then top with 2 eggs. Then he will repeat this process couple of times and chef is amaze of the version of Fried Oyster Ommelet in Penang as they have never seen this version of cooking which is totally different from the ones they had in Singapore.

Chef Micheal (48)

As when Chef Michael saw how he pour the whole pot of oil to cook along, he was stun for a while and imagine how greasy the food will be.

Chef Micheal (49)

After the base is cook, he will separate it at the side and cook another layer.

Chef Micheal (50)

this is how it is while cooking along that soak into near full pot of oil

Chef Micheal (53)

With huge fire frying along like that, I just cant wait to have a big bite on this fried oyster.

Chef Micheal (51)

While waiting for our lovely fried oyster, I get a chance to take picture with the chef himself and understand further on how he actually end up being a chef.

Chef Micheal (52)

Upon request need to take a weird picture, so this is how it end up . .hehe

Chef Micheal (55)

Jeng Jeng Jeng, after 35 minutes of waiting, here is our plate of oyster that its sprinkle along with lots of mini oyster. It cook with alot of oil yet it does not taste greasy as it is.

Chef Micheal (54)

And this plate turns out to be one of Chef Micheal’s favorite. To make it even more flavourful, must not miss to dip along with chili sauce.

Chef Micheal (56)

And we try again to infuse with Hennessy X.O. Turns out to be CKT still the winner among all. I guess if the oyster were soak into Hennessy and cook then, it would taste awesome (in my own imagination)

Chef Micheal (57)

Then we head back to hotel for a short break then head for an interview session with him. During the interview session, one good thing to know that he have high expectation for Penang food as he grown up to have one of the best food from his Nanny.

chef mention that Penang food would pair very well with Hennessy X.O as the food in the island is robust in taste. Then further understand him that he is actually from Law background that did not practise law but his instead pursued his dreams to become a chefs. Then by following his passion he kick off his career in a fine dining restaurant Au Jardin before moving on to stints at The Fat Duck, L’Enclume and Anthony’s in England, Mugaritz in San Sebastian, Spain and Noma in Copenhagen, Denmark.

With his hard work and dedication to excellence that had made him being nominated for the World Gourmet Summit Awards of Excellence ‘Rising Chef of the Year’ in 2010 and 2011, with FiftyThree,  his restaurant that opens its door at year 2009 and nominated as ‘Best Restaurant’ in 2011. Notably, FiftyThree was featured as one of World’s 50 Best Restaurants ‘Regional Spotlight –Singapore’, and on CNNgo.com’s Best Eats 2010 as Singapore’s Best Gourmet Restaurant of 2010. The awards doesnt stop there as FiftyThree also won the World Gourmet Summit Awards of Excellence ‘Restaurant of the Year’ in 2012, with Michael garnering the title of ‘Rising Chef of the Year’.

Here are the interview video capture by Wilson. Thanks you~

Pictures credit to Wilson (bloggers whom attend along are, Anna, Cheng Yi, Me, Wilson and Sidney) along with Chef Michael and Karen

However, after this preview of food trail, I am very curious what Chef Michael will prepare for us at next session in Penang within the chapel of St. Joseph’s Novitiate from September 26th to 28th 2012. His cooking style or background are more European cooking which using less oil and fresh ingredients. I just cant wait what is the dish that he is going to come out with this challenge that being put upfront, that by deconstructing Penang local delicacies to make a fine dine. Looking forward for end of this month for the special dining.

and wheee. . got feature in The Star, Metro north section

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0 comment

FiSh 12/09/2012 - 2:02 pm

wahh keep drinking hennessy nonstop! XD hahah what an awesome trip!

Latest: Durian Dim Sum??

Reply
admin 14/09/2012 - 10:06 am

lol, you should know ma..next Hennessy we drink! if u goin

Reply
TheJessicat 12/09/2012 - 2:23 pm

Yay! Glad to see ur enjoying Penang dear!
Wheeeeeee 😀 😀 We just can’t stop eating in Penang, can we? hehe

Reply
admin 14/09/2012 - 10:06 am

In Pg, stop eating is a sin ah . .:p

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Ken 13/09/2012 - 12:04 am

wow, sounds fun and how many bottles of X.O were there during the whole trip LOL 😛

Reply
admin 14/09/2012 - 10:06 am

yap yap..something new for us.. keep adding Hennessy X.O in every thing we eat.. 😀

Reply
KY 13/09/2012 - 2:00 pm

looks like a damn fun trip! sure gain a KG or two after that. haha

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admin 14/09/2012 - 10:05 am

heeee,, it is eh, didnt gain that much la. .

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eiling 14/09/2012 - 10:16 am

people are staring because you guys look like alcoholics drinking henessy XO at all the hawker stalls?!! haha… jealous nya…

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Wong Pow Long 19/09/2012 - 10:26 am

Pairing the Hennessy XO with penang local food is kind of good idea that do fusion out with a new taste that i still can’t imagine. But this will make the price of the local food double as the cost of XO is not cheap.

Wong, BestPenangFood.com

Reply
admin 19/09/2012 - 2:47 pm

yeah, so we are very curious what the chef will come out with…

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